Air Chief Marshall Arup Raha, Fmr Chief of Air Staff, India (2014 -16)

Air Chief Marshall Arup Raha, Fmr Chief of Air Staff, India (2014 -16) (3)

Air Chief Marshall Arup Raha, Fmr Chief of Air Staff, India (2014 -16)

Air Chief Marshall Arup Raha, Fmr Chief of Air Staff, India (2014 -16) was the Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee during the same time. He has been honored with the Param Vishisht Seva Medal, the Ati Vishisht Seva Medal, and the Vishisht Seva Medal by the Prime Minister of India. Tune in to listen to the former Air Chief Marshal of India.

Podcast

Overview

Today we are very happy to introduce Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha as our guest. Mr. Raha was the Chief of Air Staff of India from 2014-16. He was the Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee during the same time. He has been honored with the Param Vishisht Seva Medal, the Ati Vishisht Seva Medal, and the Vishisht Seva Medal by the Prime Minister of India. 

Mr. Raha’s journey to the top

Air Chief Marshal Raha says that every individual needs to do their best in their professional life. To perform the best they need inspiration. He tells us that his inspiration comes from his father who was a fresh doctor when WW2 broke. He volunteered to help injured soldiers during that time. He loved his country and wanted at least one of his five sons to serve the country as an army man. Air Chief Marshal Raha had the inspiration and passion he required so he joined the Airforce. He tells us that there is no substitute for hard work. He worked hard and increased his employability in his field. He adds that luck is also a factor when you talk about promotion in the armed forces as everyone is equally deserving. He considers getting promoted to be a bonus which he got as 5 promotions in his career.

Mr. Raha as a leader

Speaking of the leadership, Air Chief Marshal Raha tells us that he believes in building human relations. He said that army leadership looks very strict from a distance but he wasn’t that kind of a senior to his juniors. He was disciplined yet approachable.

Evolution of technology in armed forces over four decades

Air Chief Marshal Raha tells us that equipment used by armed forces, especially in the Airforce wing, plays a major role. Technologies change rapidly and they get improved equipment. However, the biggest challenge they face there is dealing with obsolescence. The army equipment is very expensive and needs to be upgraded constantly otherwise they lose their operational relevance and become obsolete even before their expiry dates.

Why is the defense of SPACE so important?

Air Chief Marshal Raha states that the new domain of warfare will be space and cyberspace. These are the silent domains of warfare, where no bullet or bloodshed is needed but the technologies would be used to overwhelm the adversary. He adds that intelligence gathering, surveillance, communication, infrared radars, etc. are all connected to space and cyberspace technologies. Therefore, the Indian armed forces are strengthening their space-based assets. 

Dealing with the ‘Tough’ neighborhood

Speaking of China, Air Chief Marshal Raha says that China is becoming a problem for the world, not just for India. Especially after the COVID virus spread from a town in China, it is certain that China is a challenge to the entire world. It has become the manufacturing hub for many countries. China is in constant rivalry of becoming a superpower with the USA. Secondly, its revisionist policy, the supremacy of the middle kingdom attitude and national narrative are throwing big challenges towards the world in terms of security. Mr. Raha mentions that this nuclear neighbor is adversarial to us and is working with another neighbor on the west to keep India engaged in security concerns and slow the growth of our economy and power. He suggests that it is the time we change our policy and stand firm against it. He says that we have done a lot but it is not enough. We need to do more.

The neighbor on the west

Discussing Pakistan, Air Chief Marshal Raha says that Pakistan is a thorn in our flesh. It blames India for the bifurcation of Bangladesh from Pakistan and is seeking mindless revenge. This revenge might continue for two more generations but eventually, it will come to an end. However, currently, Pakistan is being supported by China to slow India’s growth and we should tackle it boldly even if it translates into higher-level conflict. He further says that Pakistan does not have an army, Pakistan Army has a nation instead. Pakistan’s politics is being controlled by its army. 

Mr. Raha’s views on soldiers of different countries fighting for different reasons

Our host asks Air Chief Marshal Raha about his views on Chinese soldiers fighting for their political party, Pakistani soldiers fighting for their religion, and Indian soldiers fighting for their motherland. Air Chief Marshal Raha affirms that the PLA does not belong to China but to the Communist Party of China. They have brutalized society and they believe that the only way to deal with the nation is by using force. He adds that the morale of the army there is very low especially after the one-child policy, nobody is willing to join the army, there is no incentive and excessive corruption. Speaking of the Pakistani army, he says that the army rules the state of Pakistan despite knowing that it has lost all the wars it has fought and surrendered to India in 1971, it is still ruling the nation so nothing can be done about it. Finally, he affirms that the Indian Army is apolitical, abides by the constitution, and in Air Chief Marshal Raha’s opinion the fourth pillar to Indian democracy. 

Profile

Air Chief Marshall Arup Raha, Fmr Chief of Air Staff, India (2014 -16) was the Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee during the same time. He has been honored with the Param Vishisht Seva Medal, the Ati Vishisht Seva Medal, and the Vishisht Seva Medal by the Prime Minister of India. Tune in to listen to the former Air Chief Marshal of India.

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